Campaign forms filed by Glendale's 14 City Council candidates last week showed that two each have investments worth more than half a million dollars and that most of them consider the pace of the city's growth the major issue in this year's election.
Publisher Richard Jutras, a former city planning commissioner, and real estate broker Joe Ayvazi, who plans to develop senior housing around the city's historic Goode House, emerged as the wealthiest contenders, according to financial disclosure statements each candidate was required to file.
Campaign statements filed by all candidates reflected the general scope of the debate over growth, with Jutras calling for tougher development standards and Ayvazi promoting clearer rules for developers to follow.
The two incumbent candidates, Mayor Carl Raggio and Councilwoman Ginger Bremberg, reported virtually no investment holdings. The statements of Raggio and Bremberg touted their records of managing the city's growth.
A third incumbent, Councilman John F. Day, decided not to seek a fourth term. His decision ensures that at least one challenger will be among the three candidates elected April 4.
In his financial statement, Jutras listed investments in one publishing and two printing companies, as well as two properties, each worth more than $100,000. A longtime member and past president of the Glendale Chamber of Commerce, Jutras was chosen its Man of the Year in 1986. In his candidate statement, Jutras called for "tougher standards on future development."
Ayvazi, who describes himself as a "small businessman" in his candidate statement, listed investments of more than $100,000 in five properties, as well as smaller investments in stock shares.
Not surprisingly, Ayvazi was the candidate most sympathetic toward developers in his statement: "We need to plan our city's future growth so that builders know up front what our city will and won't permit."
Bremberg listed one investment of less that $10,000 in common stock, and no investments in real estate.
Bremberg's statement said Glendale needs a candidate "who has no conflicts of interest," and, according to her statement, was the only contender to acknowledge receiving a gift--a $75 poinsettia plant from Forest Lawn Memorial Park. Bremberg said she "will continue prioritizing redevelopment projects."
Raggio, who owns stock worth less than $100,000, reiterated in his candidate statement his pledge to continue improving Glendale's "quality of life," a theme he has embraced since the campaign started. He said the city's moratorium on apartment and condominium construction, approved while he was mayor, is an example of his commitment to control growth.
Architect Richard C. Diradourian wrote in his statement: "Few residents are aware that Glendale's current moratorium does not protect our city against commercial expansion." A self-described "slow-growth" candidate, Diradourian listed a trust deed worth more than $100,000 as his sole investment.
If Diradourian is a slow-growth candidate, then Robin Westmiller is the no-growth candidate. In her statement, she called for immediate action against "rampant overgrowth" and "traffic congestion." Westmiller, who owns a speakers bureau, listed earnings of $250 to $1,000 from fees she charges for booking speakers.
Public relations executive Berdj Karapetian listed the value of his company at between $10,000 and $100,000. His other listed investment is part ownership in a parcel of real estate that has a market value of more than $100,000. Karapetian proposes a "comprehensive plan for managed growth and development" in his statement.
Richard (Dick) Matthews, a Carnation Co. vice president, wrote that if he is elected, Glendale will benefit from his "proven leadership," gained through 23 years as a management executive of a large company. Matthews listed his Glen Avenue home, worth over $100,000, as his only investment.
Landscaper Richard Seeley listed his home as worth less than $100,000. His statement said he is an opponent of "special interests" and "greed and self-interest." Seeley listed his business as being worth between $10,000 and $100,000.
Nida Solana Brown, an estate-planning attorney, was one of several candidates to list housing for senior citizens among her concerns. Brown, who was endorsed by outgoing Councilman Day, listed two real estate investments worth more than $100,000.
Attorney Shirley Griffin acknowledged no real estate investments, but reported stock shares in nine companies worth $10,000 to $100,000, and five stock investments worth $1,000 to $10,000. In her candidate statement, Griffin portrayed herself as a traditional conservative, advocating the kind of values "former President Reagan has suggested."